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Netanyahu thanks Trump for ‘answering another of my important requests’ on eve of election

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The foreign collusion story is mainstream. Not Russia. Israel. On NPR this morning, the host asked a State Department official whether Donald Trump designated the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist organization so as to make an offering to Benjamin Netanyahu on the eve of the Israeli election.

“I want to ask you about the timing of this,” David Greene said. “The response from from Israel was quick and I should say pretty jubilant. Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu… wrote on twitter in Hebrew that President Trump was ‘answering another of my important requests.’ Is that what’s happening here?

Brian Hook of State said Israel will benefit from the decision, but it was made in the U.S. interest. Greene persisted:

We should say Iranians certainly see a connection with the Israeli election and Iran’s foreign minister called this an election eve gift to Netanyahu. Even if the United States makes a decision based on national security, is the timing of this announcement helpful to Benjamin Netanyahu…

Here is Netanyahu’s tweet translated from Hebrew:

“Thank you, my dear friend, President Donald Trump, for answering another one of my important requests.”

The English language version of Netanyahu’s tweet left out the requests (as Raf Sanchez noted).

Thank you, President for your decision to designate the Islamic revolutionary guards as a terrorist organization. Once again you are keeping the world safe from Iran aggression and terrorism.

The Intercept is on the story: “As the Telegraph correspondent Raf Sanchez noted, Netanyahu’s choice of words seemed to imply that Trump’s earlier decision to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, Syrian territory Israel seized by force in 1967, was also a gift given at the request of the embattled Israeli prime minister.”

The Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif thinks he knows what’s going on:

A(nother) misguided election-eve gift to Netanyahu. A(nother) dangerous U.S. misadventure in the region.

Zarif also tweeted that the action is the result of the dangerous influence of NetanyahuFirsters, specifically Sheldon Adelson, who has made Trump his “perfect little puppet” (citing Trump’s former accusation of a rival).

NetanyahuFirsters… have long agitated for FTO designation of the IRGC fully understand its consequences for US forces in the region. In fact, they seek to drag US into a quagmire on his behalf. should know better than to be conned into another US disaster.

Adelson and his wife have given over $133 million to Trump efforts. Adelson has also backed Netanyahu handsomely. And of course Adelson has pushed an American president to nuke Iran.

I am always hoping that this will become a story. Now that the Russia story is dying down, maybe it’s time for the press to hop on the Adelson-Trump-Netanyahu nexus. A NBC opinion writer said that Miriam Adelson got the Presidential Medal of Freedom for the Adelsons’ $133 million; it ought to focus on the foreign-policy benefits of the relationship.

A reminder of how thoroughgoing is Trump’s support for Israel:

–A month before assuming office, Trump sought to interfere in President Obama’s decision to abstain from a December 2016 UN Security Council resolution condemning settlements by asking the Russians to veto the resolution. The Russians failed to comply, but former national security adviser Mike Flynn will likely go to jail for lying about the effort.

–Trump tore up President Obama’s signature foreign policy achievement, the Iran Deal, despite the opposition of European and global leaders. It is widely thought (common sense to think) that he did so to please large donors, including Adelson.

–Trump moved the Embassy to Jerusalem despite the same global opposition. That decision has inflamed Palestine and led indirectly to the killings of 100s of protesters by Israel in Gaza. Trump said a few days ago, “Sheldon and Miriam, that is the most important thing I think that’s ever happened in their life.” Hundreds of Palestinians have died in protests that arose from that disastrous decision.

Netanyahu on the phone to Trump hearing good news about Golan Heights.
Photo by Kobi Gideon / GPO

–Trump recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights in what was seen as a boon to Netanyahu in the runup to the election, in March.

–Trump backed down on his decision to withdraw troops from Syria under pressure from Israel/Netanyahu among others.

–Trump has appointed a raft of Netanyahu devotees to his administration, surely pleasing Sheldon Adelson. John Bolton, Elliott Abrams, David Friedman. Not to mention his relationship to the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Let’s say it’s not collusion, just utter sympathy of these three figures. It’s still political: it’s something Democrats should be talking about as a giant issue.

Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is senior editor of and founded the site in 2005-06.

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8 Responses

  1. eljay on April 9, 2019, 2:35 pm

    2001: “America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction.”
    2019: “Trump is a person you can move very easily, move him in the right direction.”

    But not to worry, Trump’s no pushover: Not only will he make sure he gets to be “Grand Marshal of the Israeli Day Parade” again, but this time he’s going to insist on a crown, a sash and a sceptre!

    • amigo on April 9, 2019, 3:46 pm

      “2001: “America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction.””.

      Beat me to it eljay.I was going to ask why nuttyahoo was bragging.

  2. Mooser on April 9, 2019, 3:02 pm

    “it’s something Democrats should be talking about as a giant issue.”

    Oh, it is. What can the Democrats possibly give Israel which will top Trump’s gifts?
    Or should they cede Zionism to Trump, and come out as the anti-semitic party in the next election?

  3. JLewisDickerson on April 9, 2019, 3:23 pm

    RE: “Zarif also tweeted that the action is the result of the dangerous influence of NetanyahuFirsters, specifically Sheldon Adelson, who has made Trump his “perfect little puppet” (citing Trump’s former accusation of a rival).” ~ Weiss

    JAMES & BOBBY PURIFY (1966):

    Pull the string and I’ll wink at you, I’m your puppet
    I’ll do funny things if you want me to, I’m your puppet

    I’m yours to have and to hold
    Darling you’ve got full control of your puppet

    Pull another string and I’ll kiss your lips, I’m your puppet
    Snap your finger and I’ll turn you some flips, I’m your puppet

    Listen, your every wish is my command
    All you gotta do is wiggle your little hand
    I’m your puppet, I’m your puppet . . .

  4. peacenotapartheid on April 9, 2019, 5:30 pm

    If this isn’t evidence of quid pro quo corruption, what is?: “I can tell you that Sheldon and Miriam, that is the most important thing I think that’s ever happened in their life. They love Israel.” (from Trump’s speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition)

    • Misterioso on April 10, 2019, 10:15 am

      @peacenotapartheid, et al


      Canada’s CBC Television’s Wendy Mesley interviews NYT reporter Ken Vogel regarding Sheldon Adelson and Stephen Harper, et al, and their support for Israel

      “The Godfather” – Canada’s CBC exposé on Sheldon Adelson’s influence on Trump, Harper, & Mideast policies” Provided by If Americans Knew

      “Prominent Canadian news broadcaster Wendy Mesley exposes the role of billionaire campaign donor Sheldon Adelson in getting the U.S. embassy moved to Jerusalem, Trump’s abandonment of the Iran nuclear deal, and both U.S. and Canadian politics in general.

      “Adelson, the tenth richest man in the world and the GOP’s largest donor, is known to use his money to influence policies on behalf of Israel.

      “After trump tore up the Iran agreement, Adelson donated an additional $30 million to the Republican party, possibly the single largest single donation in U.S. history.

      “Adelson also influenced former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who endorsed Trump’s embassy action and anti-Iran move.

      “Mesley interviews New York Times reporter Ken Vogel, who says that Adelson has private meetings at the White House with Trump, Vice President Pence, John Bolton, and others. Israel is at the heart of Adelson’s donations, who has been influenced by his Israeli wife. Vogel explains that Adelson is ‘the enforcer’ for Jewish American donors who give a lot of money to Republican politicians. People are afraid to cross him.

      “The report was broadcast on CBC’s news program “The Weekly with Wendy Mesley” on May 20, 2018.

      “See a related video about Adelson: “Sheldon Adelson regrets having worn an American uniform rather than an Israeli one”


      The Guardian, June 8/18

      “Sheldon Adelson: the casino mogul driving Trump’s Middle East policy
      The Las Vegas billionaire gave Republicans $82m for the 2016 elections and his views, notably staunch support for Netanyahu’s Israel, are now the official US line.”

      “In 2015, the billionaire casino owner and Republican party funder Sheldon Adelson spent days in a Las Vegas courtroom watching his reputation torn apart and wondering if his gambling empire was facing ruin.
      An official from Nevada’s gaming control board sat at the back of the court listening to mounting evidence that Adelson bribed Chinese officials and worked with organised crime at his casinos in Macau – allegations that could have seen the magnate’s Las Vegas casinos stripped of their licenses.”

  5. HarryLaw on April 9, 2019, 5:51 pm

    Phil forgot to mention Jared Kushner, Trumps senior adviser, who has let Netanyahu sleep in his bed. All Trump needs to do now is to give his state of the Union address in Hebrew.

    • RoHa on April 10, 2019, 12:04 am

      “Jared Kushner, Trumps senior adviser, who has let Netanyahu sleep in his bed.”

      Was Kushner in it at the time?

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